It’s been more than 15 years since Texas has had a day without a single traffic fatality. On average, someone is killed in a motor vehicle accident every two-and-a-half hours and injured every two minutes, according to the Texas Department of Transportation.
Just last year, the National Safety Council released its 2015 review of traffic accident data and reported Texas leads the nation in roadway fatalities and trucking accidents, with 13.1 deaths occurring for every 100,000 people. In 2014,
But what about pedestrian accidents? Pedestrian accidents in Texas, while not as high as car crashes and trucking accidents, have been on the rise in the past few years. Approximately 475 pedestrians die annually in Texas, and this problem could be avoided by understanding our state’s pedestrian laws.
What Does Right Of Way Really Mean For Pedestrians?
We’re sure you’ve heard time and again that pedestrians always have the right of way. Well, that’s not necessarily true. Legally speaking, pedestrians have the right of way at marked crosswalks and controlled intersections.
Pedestrians are required to obey traffic laws and signals, just like every driver, truck driver, motorcyclist and cyclist. Actions like jaywalking can easily lead to a pedestrian accident and the need for a personal injury lawyer.
What Are Texas’ Pedestrian Laws?
Each state adheres to its own pedestrian laws. Motorists in most states must stop or yield to pedestrians at controlled crossings. Only nine states and the District of Columbia require motorists to stop when nearing a pedestrian in an uncontrolled crosswalk.
Here are some of Texas’ pedestrian laws based on the Texas Transportation Code Chapter 552 on Pedestrians.
- Pedestrians are legally obligated to abide by traffic signals unless they have a special designated signal. If a traffic light is red or yellow, pedestrians should not cross the road. They must legally wait for the pedestrian crossing signal.
- If the traffic light is green, pedestrians have the right of way. If there is a walk signal, pedestrians have the right of way; oncoming motorists must yield.
- Pedestrians are not legally allowed to cross the road without a green light or walk signal. Pedestrians may remain stationary if there is a wait or don’t walk signal.
- Vehicles cannot pass other cars that are stopped at a crosswalk.
- Pedestrians must stay on the right side of a crosswalk.
- If pedestrians are crossing an area of a road that lacks a designated crosswalk, then they do not have the right of way. In this case, pedestrians must yield to oncoming traffic.
- Pedestrians are not permitted to walk on roadways when there is a sidewalk.
- When pedestrians are allowed to walk on roadways, they must remain on the left side of the road facing oncoming traffic
Personal Injury Due to a Pedestrian Accident?
Pedestrian accidents are unlike any other type of roadway accident. Unlike a motorist shielded by the weight of a car or protected by a motorcycle helmet, pedestrians are completely vulnerable in a car crash.
Pedestrian accidents are some of the most severe and tragic personal injury cases we see at The VanDeLoo Firm. Pedestrian accidents can happen to anyone, from senior citizens to young children.
If you or someone you know has been injured in a pedestrian accident and someone else was at fault, The VanDeLoo Firm wants to see you get justice and closure. We will look at both sides of the accident to determine who is at fault and what damages you are entitled to. Contact The VanDeLoo Firm today to schedule a free consultation to discuss your case.